Canyoning the Serra de Tramuntana
The wild limestone peaks and boulder-strewn gorges of the central Serra de Tramuntana between Valldemossa and Sa Calobra create the ideal backdrop for canyoneers. By far the most challenging (rated 5 to 6, for experts only) is the 2.5km Gorg Blau-Sa Fosca, one of Europe's most dramatic canyons, descending north and then northeast from the dam of the same name. It's a tough route, with drops, scrambling, freezing water and a 400m stretch in total darkness to negotiate. An easier alternative (though by no means a walk in the park), is the 8km Torrent de Pareis, surrounded by majestic rock walls. Either way, a local guide is essential; try Experience Mallorca, Tramuntana Tours or Món d'Aventura.
Driving between Sóller and Alaró
A dramatic driving route winds its way south of Sóller. To begin with, climb the valley into the hills (the tunnel costs €4.95 and isn’t as pretty) and enjoy the views to Palma as you bend with the switchbacks on the other side. Before entering Bunyola and the towns that lie beyond, it’s worth pausing to visit a grand reminder of Moorish Mallorca: the Jardins de Alfàbia.
Andratx to Valldemossa Coast Road
Welcome to one of the Mediterranean’s most exhilarating stretches of coastline, embraced by the Ma10 road, which climbs away from Andratx into the pine-clad hills marking the beginning of the majestic Serra de Tramuntana range. Pasted to cliff tops and hillsides, the hamlets and lookouts that dot this mostly lonely stretch of road have arresting views of raw coastal beauty.
From Sóller to Sa Calobra on the Ma10
Taking in the wide open sea, the island's highest mountains and plunging cliffs, the Ma10 road from Sóller to the Monestir de Lluc is one of Mallorca's great drives – or cycle rides, if you have quadriceps of steel. The first stop is the Mirador de Ses Barques, about 6km out of Sóller and above Fornalutx, with phenomenal views all the way down to Port de Sóller; the cafe here serves great freshly squeezed orange juice, as well as snacks. The road unravels eastward to cross the Serra de Son Torrella range, and 16km out of Sóller a side road leads north up to the island’s highest point, Puig Major (1445m). The peak is off-limits, however, as this is Air Force territory and topped by a communications base and radar. From here the road wends its way around two dazzling patches of liquid blue, the Cúber and Gorg Blau dams, before heading through the Monnaber tunnel in the side of Puig Major and continuing to the turn-off for the winding plunge to Sa Calobra and Cala Tuent.